Over the last year, young writers we’ve worked with have told us that there is a block in the road for their artistic and professional development. They've told us they see few projects that support writers on the cusp of professional practice and give them space to play with the many possible forms that performance can take.
In a continued partnership with Playwrights’ Studio Scotland, textLAB offers training bursaries to six writers aged 18-25 to come together and interrogate – through practice – what contemporary performance writing could look like. The young writers will build a long-term programme of creative provocations and skills development workshops that are bespoke to their needs, drawing on the expertise of artists working across forms, genres and disciplines. After 10 months, this new community of writers will share their work in a form – live or digital, performance or print – that they will co-create with Scottish Youth Theatre.
We are delighted to now be working with the following young writers through textLAB:
Anna is a Highland-born writer creating character-driven stories. She's proactive, with a keen eye for dramaturgy, and thrives supporting others in making work. Anna enjoys narratives which get stuck in your head – those texts that are fresh and forthright, and pack an emotional punch when experienced.
Calum is a thoughtful writer who draws on his own experiences to illuminate the intricacies of the autistic perspective in his work. By contrasting realistic vulnerability with sharp humour, Calum creates complex characters with naturalistic dialogue and empathetic depth.
Dylan is a diabetic writer who specialises in dark, yet riveting, futuristic pieces which question the future and challenge reality with a funny off-the-wall energy. His writing focuses on characters who experience solitude in its most extreme forms.
Lara is a writer whose work delights in folklore, feminism and animals. She finds humour in the horrible and plays with form in surprising, free-spirited ways. Her work resists easy categorisation, dwelling on the boundary of prose, poetry and play.
Coming from China, Lintong's practice seeks lightness through black comedy. Her works are an insightful and distinctive exploration of multilingualism, curiously entertaining audiences with her unique brand of satire.
Rebecca is a disabled lesbian scriptwriter. She creates accessible work which blends the personal and political to create nuanced yet accurate representations of marginalised identities. In her pursuit of this she has worked with inclusive companies such as Birds of Paradise, Sanctuary Queer Arts and Scottish Youth Theatre.
textLAB began in February, with weekly sessions and skills development workshops exploring some of the foundational principles required as a practicing writer, including sessions facilitated by Stef Smith and Adura Onashile, who are both Associate Playwrights at
Playwrights' Studio Scotland. Find more of the programme's overall timeline below:
Foundation Sessions – weekly throughout February & March 2022
Provocation Sessions – weekly April to September 2022
openLAB Sessions – programmed by selected writers, October 2022
Final works devised by the writers are to be shared in November 2022. More details on the event to follow.